Basic Biographical Details

Name: Robertson & Swan
Designation: Architectural practice
Started: 1912
Ended: 1921
Bio Notes: Thomas Aikman Swan (born 1883) joined Alan Keith Robertson (born 1881) as assistant and prospective partner in the second half of 1910. Robertson's office was then at 29 Hanover Street, Edinburgh, but a branch office of the practice was subsequently opened at Dalkeith, where Swan had connections, and the partnership of Robertson & Swan was duly formed in 1912. Swan appears to have had a considerable design role as the fašade of Robertson & Swan's Moray House had points in common with the Arts Building at the University of Alberta by Lorimer's former assistant Percy Erskine Nobbs, while the architecture of the Suffolk Halls campus was pure Lorimer.

The partnership did not long survive the First World War. Robertson did not seek a commission, preferring to serve in the line. He was severely wounded, recommencing practice in very poor health in 1917. Swan was commissioned, served in France and ended his service as a Major, thereafter being generally known as Major Aikman Swan. The partnership was resumed in 1919 but Swan withdrew in 1921, partly because of Robertson's chronic ill health, and partly because he is said to have thought it inappropriate to have a non-commissioned ex-serviceman as senior partner; but it was probably also because Swan was undertaking most of the work and had won first premiums in the competitions for four Edinburgh housing schemes, only one of which came his way.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architectural practice:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 229, Hanover Street, Edinburgh, ScotlandBusiness1912  
Item 2 of 2Dalkeith, Midlothian, ScotlandBusiness1912  

Employment and Training

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architectural practice (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 2Alan Keith Robertson19121921Partner 
Item 2 of 2Thomas Aikman Swan19121921Partner 

Buildings and Designs

This architectural practice was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 81912Moray House Training College  EdinburghScotland 
Item 2 of 8After 1912(?)Street improvement schemes  EdinburghScotlandUnclear whether by Robertson & Swan or by Swan alone after partnership was dissolved in 1921
Item 3 of 81914Suffolk Road Halls of Residence, Moray House  EdinburghScotland 
Item 4 of 81917School hostelPortreeSkyeInverness-shireScotland 
Item 5 of 81917School hostelStornowayLewisRoss and CromartyScotlandDesign
Item 6 of 81919Tranent Housing SchemeTranent East LothianScotland 
Item 7 of 8c. 1919Edinburgh Corporation Reconstruction Scheme  EdinburghScotlandSecond premiated competition design
Item 8 of 81920TorduffColinton EdinburghScotlandAlterations


Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this architectural practice:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 1Builder22 May 1925   

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this architectural practice:
 SourceArchive NameSource Catalogue No.Notes
Item 1 of 1Professor David M Walker personal archiveProfessor David M Walker, notes and collection of archive material Personal information from Frank Wood